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Low dose Benadryl as a treatment
Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2015 2:32 PM
Joined: 4/28/2015
Posts: 9

Is anyone here familiar with Phizer's look at Dimebon (a Russian antihistamine) for it's reported benefits in Alzheimer's patients? Take a good look at the reports on that study and follow the money...... something very suspicious going on there.

I came across this while researching a question on antihistamines on another group, a mitochondrial disease group. Do a search on "Alzheimer's and mitochondrial dysfunction", there is a connection.

To make a long story short, I commented on the possibility of cognitive improvement in my answer on the use of antihistamines. Immediately I received enough anecdotal reports on beneficial effects of some few antihistamines when taken in low doses that I started low doses of Benadryl throughout the day. Within 24 hours I saw some rather dramatic improvements in my physical condition and while the cognitive improvements were slower to come, they have been no less dramatic.

Benadryl and Atarax are 1 and 2 in effectiveness and the dosing for both is the same: 1 mg per 15 lbs of body weight every 6 hours (if possible including 1 dose in the middle of the night). Benadryl can be dosed easily by using a measured amount of the children's liquid at 2.5 mg per ml. I take mine diluted.

If anyone is interested I'll post links to my observations and the studies I found that explain what is going on but it boils down to one line in a study published in 1961:

"1. It is shown that a number of antihistamine drugs which prevent liver injury inhibit mitochondrial swelling at concentrations at which they do not affect electron transport or oxidative phosphorylation."

Translating this you get "low doses of certain antihistamines inhibit cell death and/or degranulation by inhibiting mitochondrial swelling".


Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2015 5:27 PM
Joined: 7/30/2013
Posts: 6056

Current research indicates that anticholinergic drugs like Benadryl increase one's risk of developing dementia. Maybe there is a safer antihistamine that you can use. Zyrtec, for example, has very low anticholinergic properties and may be a better choice.

Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2015 8:32 PM
Joined: 4/28/2015
Posts: 9

While that may be true for the normal dose, the low dose works differently. For instance, as an antihistamine the normal dose blocks histamine receptors ... at the low dose it inhibits the release of histamine. Before I started the treatment I suffered from severe anterograde amnesia along with other cognitive issues that were well advanced. Now, a bit over 3 and 1/2 years later, my memory is better than at anytime in my life and I can spell ... again, I can do simple math in my head ... again, follow a tv program .. again, remember the day and date .. again, need I go on?

do a search on "low dose Benadryl feedback" and read about the wide range of issues addressed by this almost universal treatment. Included is theoretical feedback from one Dr. Lance Becker who was a featured researcher on a episode of Through the Wormhole titled "Can we Resuscitate the Dead".


Jo C.
Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 9:24 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 13308


Diphenhydramine, the active ingredient in Benadryl and most of the OTC sleep aids such as Nytol, etc. is CONTRAINDICATED in persons with dementia. This has been well documented.

Diphenhydramine has not only been linked as a possible contributor to development of dementia; it is also implicated as inappropriate for use when dementia is present.

Diphenhydramine, the active ingredient in Benadryl suppresses one of the main chemical messengers in the brain that is already in low supply when dementia is present. It can contribute to confusion, cognitive impairment and also contributes to falls.

In an article in the American Journal of Geriatrics, it was noted that Benadryl is one of the primary offenders in causing delerium to become superimposed on top of dementia which can cause significant negative changes and lead to negative outcomes. It is difficult to identify and diagnose such superimposed delerium and it may seem to a physician or family members that the dementia has worsened when indeed it has not.

I did go to your recommended "low dose Bendadryl feedback," as you suggested. What I found is that this is more or less a personal blog-type writing done by David Staup, (assuming this is probably you), and it has not a scientific or even medical citation to support the subjective belief. No backup, no research, etc.

NOTE: In your "blog" writing you mention you personally have an, "acquired metabolic syndrome," and the entire scope of the writing and references are all regarding Mutiple Sclerosis. Some types of MS have waxing and waning periods. Nowhere is dementia mentioned either for using diphyenhydramine, and also it is not mentioned anywhere that you, yourself have dementia.

Yet, you are recommending something that is not proven in research studies performed by credible medical specialists in the population you are addressing here.

This can be very dangerous for others who may be harmed by what is being presented as a medical treatment; especially when some of the persons who may be Members or those lurking and reading may be very vulnerable people whose judgment and reasoning may be affected by their disease.

CAVEAT: We never know who is on the other side of the keyboard, and best practice is to always consult our dementia specialists regarding anything of this sort.

As Hippocrates warned and as what is part of the physician's creed, the primary priority and focus is: "First, do no harm."


Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 9:33 AM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3608


My son had severe hives as a child, nothing worked, he took one tiny pill and they were gone in an hour and never came back. Could never recall the name of that pill and now I have it!

Thank you.

I took a regular dose of Benadryl lately for hives and did have bad reaction. Will look at your links though. Low dose stuff is very different and when you have a disease wrecking your life these small experiments with no science (that we are aware of) may work.

I use alternatives to treat the anxiety of the illness and unhealthy living conditions as I claw my way out of my situation.

The basic meds people here take and believe in did not work for me, and people get very frightened when they can not tolerate them or afford them. However even the manufacturers of those meds make no claim that those meds shorten progress of dementia.

There seems to be people who believe totally in Big Pharma and those who will experiment. Thanks for mentioning the name of that pill!

Jo C.
Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 9:59 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 13308

Hi alz+; our posts were being written at the same time and they pretty much posted at the same time.

As a Forum friend, I rather hope you will rethink this at this point in time. Even if it is a low dose being taken, it is still an unknown as far as outcomes.

You are in a very fragile state and have been suffering with that; you have had a bad reaction to Benadryl before, and you have been newly diagnosed with a cardiac condition inolving ventricular arrhythmia.

Perhaps this is not the best time to do this with no dementia specialist or cardiologist input.

I feel concern on your behalf, but of course, more than anything, this is your call.


Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 10:02 AM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3608

It Isn’t All About Plaque

Amyloid beta plaque on the brain has long been associated with Alzheimer’s disease, and often considered the cause of mental decline.

Apparently, this is not true.

A British study used an immune response to almost completely remove the plaque from subjects’ brains, but this did not have any affect on the progression of their dementia.

This stymies the idea of an anti-amyloid approach to fighting Alzheimer’s disease. Even if amyloid beta plaque has something to do with the onset of the disease, it clearly doesn’t have an ongoing affect. Researchers must look for another mechanism triggered concurrently that could be affecting cognition.

Posted in Aging, Alzheimers, dementia, drugs, pharmacy, research, Seniors, treatment | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Antihistamine Can Reverse Mental Deterioration

~by Zev Driller

An old antihistamine drug may come back on the market one day – to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Dimebond, once sold in Russia to treat allergies, may have the happy side affect of reversing cognitive decline. Test subjects taking Dimebond actually improved their scores on cognition tests, compared to both the control group and their own baseline scores. Alistair Burns, M.D., of the University of Manchester in England, and Robin Jacoby, D.M., of the University of Oxford in England, believe it attacks several mechanisms of dementia that could make it affective in treating mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease.

Dimebond was only on the market temporarily, and in Russia. It was pulled when better, targeted antihistamines were introduced, making it superfluous. For that reason, it was never approved for use in the United States, and has not received much notice elsewhere.

Posted in Aging, Alzheimers, dementia, drugs, pharmacy, Seniors | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 10:36 AM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3608

Jo C - you are the medical professional and appreciate your warnings.

I am just thinking of my own life, and since no Big Pharma drugs helped me, and I have serious side effects (like 14 days diarrhea) from a cardiac med, I have always used alternative/natural or low doses. I am obviously willing to try anything and definetly not seen on forums as science based medical professional suggesting anyone else try what I might!

however, below is a study that claims this did not pan out. I don't know, I cannot wait for research to come up with something new. I do not do WAITING very well.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
LatrepirdineDimebolin.svgSystematic (IUPAC) name
Clinical dataTrade namesDimebonLegal status
  • (Prescription only)
Routes of
OralIdentifiersCAS Registry Number3613-73-8ATC codeNonePubChemCID: 197033ChemSpider170644UNIIOD9237K1Z6 YesYChemical dataFormulaC21H25N3Molecular mass319.443 g/mol

Latrepirdine (INN, also known as dimebolin and sold as Dimebon), is an antihistamine drug which has been used clinically in Russia since 1983.[1]

Research was conducted in both Russia and western nations into potential applications as a neuroprotective drug to treat Alzheimer's disease and, possibly, as a nootropic, as well.[2] After a major phase III clinical trial for Alzheimer's disease (AD) treatment failed to show any benefit, three other AD trials continued.[3] Major industry-based development in this indication essentially stopped after another Phase III trial suffered the same fate in 2012.[4] Dimebon failed in the phase III trial for Huntington disease.[5]


Latrepirdine is an orally active, small molecule compound that has been shown to inhibit brain cell death in animal models of Alzheimer's disease and Huntington's disease. Research suggests it may also have cognition-enhancing effects in healthy individuals, in the absence of neurodegenerative disease pathology.[6] However, because of negative results in human clinical trials, the drug remains unlicensed for any neurodegenerative condition.[3][5]

Alzheimer's disease: failed in Phase III clinical trials[edit]

Latrepirdine attracted renewed interest in 2009 after being shown in small preclinical trials to have positive effects on persons suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Animal studies showing potential beneficial effects on Alzheimer's disease models were shown in Russian research in 2000.[7] Preliminary results from human trials have also been promising. In an initial six-month phase II trial, results have shown significant improvement over placebo at 12 months.[8] Latrepirdine showed promising results in a phase III-equivalent, double-blind trial in Russia with mild–moderate stage patients.[9][10] In April 2009, Pfizer and Medivation initiated a phase III trial (CONCERT study) aiming for FDA approval.[11] In March 2010, Pfizer announced that this clinical trial failed to show any benefit for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease patients.[3]

Numerous phase III trials for AD were recruiting in 2009.[12][13][14][15]

In July 2009, Pfizer and Medivation announced that "latrepirdine" was to be the proposed international nonproprietary name for latrepirdine for the treatment of Alzheimer's.[16]

In March 2010, the results of a clinical trial phase III were released; the investigational Alzheimer's disease drug dimebon failed in the pivotal CONNECTION trial of patients with mild-to-moderate disease.[17]

With CONCERT, the remaining Pfizer and Medivation Phase III trial for latrepirdine in Alzheimer's disease failed in 2012, effectively ending the development in this indication.[4]

Huntington's disease[edit]

In April 2011, latrepirdine failed in a phase III clinical trial of patients affected with Huntington's disease.[5] The trial was sponsored by Medivation Inc. and Pfizer.


Latrepirdine appears to operate through multiple mechanisms of action, both blocking the action of neurotoxic beta-amyloid proteins and inhibiting L-type calcium channels,[18] modulating the action of AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors,[19] and may exert a neuroprotective effect by blocking a novel target that involves mitochondrial pores,[20] which are believed to play a role in the cell death that is associated with neurodegenerative diseases and the aging process.[21] It also blocks a number of other receptors, including α-adrenergic, 5-HT2C, 5-HT5A, and 5-HT6.[22] It is of significance to note latrepirdine lacks any anticholinergic effects.[23]

Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 10:46 AM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3608

Name: Dimebon
Synonyms: Dimebolin, Latrepirdine, Pf-01913539
Chemical Name: 3,6-dimethyl-9-(2-methyl-pyridyl-5)-ethyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-γ-carboline dihydrochloride
Therapy Type: Small Molecule (timeline)
Target Type: Other Neurotransmitters (timeline), Unknown
Condition(s): Alzheimer's Disease, Huntington's Disease
U.S. FDA Status: Alzheimer's Disease (Discontinued), Huntington's Disease (Discontinued)
Company: Medivation, Inc.
Approved for: Anti-histamine use in Russia


Dimebon is an antihistamine that has been used in Russia since the 1980s to treat allergic rhinitis.

Dimebon is a pleiotropic drug with activities beyond blocking H1 histamine receptors. A mechanism of action for cognitive benefit has never been conclusively established; however, a broad spectrum of effects on neurologically relevant targets was proposed based on various cell- and animal-based studies. For example, Dimebon has been variously reported to modulate the activity of certain channels and neurotransmitter systems, including L-type and voltage-gated calcium channels, AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors, α-adrenergic receptors, and serotonergic or dopaminergic receptors.

Rodent models suggested benefits in avoidance tests in rats and hippocampal learning, though animal-behavior studies overall reported mixed results. Dimebon also has been proposed to be neurogenic, to exert protective effects on neuronal mitochondria, to reduce aggregation of misfolded proteins, to upregulate autophagy, and to be neuroprotective via a variety of pathways including blocking Aβ-mediated toxicity (for reviews, see Bezprozvanny, 2010; Bharadwadj et al., 2013).


Between 2001 and 2010, Dimebon was repurposed for the treatment of Alzheimer's and Huntington's and underwent clinical evaluation for cognitive and psychiatric benefit in those diseases. Phase 1 and 2 trials of a total of 197 Alzheimer's patients in Russia were followed by two Phase 3 trials in some 1,600 patients with mild to moderate AD conducted in the Americas, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. The Phase 2 trial reported significant improvement over placebo, but neither Phase 3 study detected change in any primary or secondary outcome (Bachurin et al., 2001; Doody et al., 2008; Mar 2010 news story).

Likewise in Huntington's, a Phase 2 study reported significant improvement on cognitive measures, but a subsequent Phase 3 trial in 403 patients was negative on all outcomes (Horizon Investigators, 2013). A peer-reviewed meta-analysis of all Dimebon trials later confirmed that the drug had no significant benefit on cognition (Cano-Cuenca et al., 2014).

For detailed news chronicling Dimebon's development history, see Jan 2012 news story; Apr 2011 news story; Apr 2010 news story; Mar 2010 news story; Oct 2009 news story; Aug 2008 news story; May 2007 news story; and all news on Dimebon.

See also all commentary on Dimebon and all clinical trials on Dimebon.


also I understand the money connection, that if a simple natural substance could cure ALZ no money would be behind proving that. Maybe I am wrong, but while waiting for a "cure" I would consider trying a non toxic supplement herb or other natural product. Just want people to not feel run off if they offer alternatives to the usual medications. Who knows? It will be someone who does keep repeating same old trials based on same old guess of cause of ALZ.

Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 11:27 AM
Joined: 4/28/2015
Posts: 9

You didn't follow the link in the first of the feedback

so if you want studies you'll have to follow my story of dramatic improvement and the studies I found to explain my observations:

Just the first 4 or 5 posts, you can skip over the discussions and go to page 3 here:

and scroll down to "7 month update" and read on from there

If you have a medical background here are just the studies:

from the abstract:

1. It is shown that a number of antihistamine drugs which prevent liver injury inhibit mitochondrial swelling at concentrations at which they do not affect electron transport or oxidative phosphorylation.

The key being " at concentrations at which they do not affect electron transport or oxidative phosphorylation" . That Benadryl does affect electron transport and oxidative phosphorylation at normal doses is the reason for all the problems you cite.

the prepub for the above which singles out Benadryl as the one providing almost complete protection is here:

as a bonus I also found this:

Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2015 1:44 PM
Joined: 12/7/2011
Posts: 147

While there may be some studies that report an improvement with Benadryl, there is not enough scientific evidence to indicate it should be used to treat Alzheimer's.

As with any proposed treatment modification, it is always a good idea to connect with your doctor before making any changes, including the use of over-the-counter medication, vitamins, supplements and diets.

There may be contradictions with your existing treatment or side effects you are not aware of and therefore the possibility exists for increased risk.

Please talk to your doctor before adding anything to your regimen. If you need help having the conversation or need other resources, please call the Alzheimer's Association anytime, 24/7, at 1-800-272-3900.

Posted: Tuesday, September 8, 2015 10:36 AM
Joined: 4/28/2015
Posts: 9

Just for balance, the following was one of the replies to my original post about the potential conative benefits of antihistamines:

" My son has had WONDERFUL results with both natural and over the counter histamine blockers. He has had seizures for 9 years that were never controlled by medicine and most medicines made him 100% worse. We tried the histamine blockers that the neuro's had always told us to stay away from. The 2 that has made the biggest difference is dye free benedryl and atarax. YOU DO NOT TAKE THESE 2 Together. Both these do cross the blood brain barrier and for my son this is what HE NEEDED. HE IS NOW SEIZURE FREE first time in 9 years!!! The medical world has had no clue what happened to my son."

The following was the deciding factor, after reading of this person's experience I started low dose Benadryl that very day:

" My father's doctor had him take Benadryl when he had Parkinson's (which seems to be mito related in our family). My dad didn't have any allergies, but it seemed to help with cognitive issues the next morning. Even his doctor noted the difference.

I have always been very sensitive to allergy medications, probably
because they tend to increase adrenaline which makes me worse. But I
have started using a very small amount of Benadryl (a few drops from the
dye-free capsules) and so far am fine. It really helped me with my
constant sleepiness which is the opposite of what you would expect from

ignorance abounds and from where I sit all too much of it is cultivated. Just one Man's opinion>


Posted: Tuesday, September 8, 2015 8:23 PM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4408

My 2 cents. Personally I don't tolerate antihistamines very well. I get very foggy, loopy and confused. I will only take them if I absolutely have to and then when I don't have to drive. I think that antihistamines are contraindicated with some of the meds used to treat alz.